If you make writing a novel a goal, when you are done, you have 80,000 words of angst and self-doubt down on the page.
If your goal is to learn French, at the end of your training, you can speak to Justin Trudeau en Francaise. At least this is what Duolingo wants us to believe.
But this past fall, I wanted a goal for the goal’s sake. I wanted a regimen without the need for a fantastic end result. Basically, my goal was “doing something and completing it.”
Just Do It!
My goal: 30 sessions of barre in 30 days
Where: Studio Barre in Newport, RI
Why: My anxiety was trippin’.
Why 2.0: I had a break-up.
Why 3.0: I let a boy kick me in the self-esteem, okay? Get off my jock!
I’m Doing It
The first week was easy because I love barre. No way was I going to choose an activity I didn’t love for 30 days. “Ride a bike on the road!” “Kickboxing!” “Eating olives!” No way, José. Plus, my barre studio has the most amazing lighting and mirrors.
Embracing my own vanity, I love looking in the mirror as I tuck, prance and “pop it, drop it.” It might seem strange since I used to suffer a raging eating disorder, but embracing how I actually look in the mirror has been a huge part of my therapy and healing. If my brain says “fat-ass” or “hag,” I can look in the mirror and see, “Oh, it’s Amy. She’s fine.”
I’m Really Doing It
Week 2 was like mile 6 of a distance run. Those endorphins kick in and make you feel all high and wheeeeeeeeee! During week 2, I celebrated my 45th birthday, and the barre-tenders made me* wear a tutu and a crown.
The studio also celebrated Halloween with a costume contest, and you have not lived until you have seen a woman dressed as a lobster pot while she works out that booty business. I dressed up as “Exercising Ruth Bader Ginsburg” because we need RBG TO STAY ALIVE, DANGIT!
*Y’all know no one made me wear that tutu. I was like, Gimme.
Fine, I’m Doing It
Week 3, I was wore out. Dealing with a break-up and releasing the anxiety of that relationship’s last gasps left me bereft and exhausted. I was becoming the Gollum of exercise. “Me hates this barre class. Me loves my precious barre class.”
But I hung in there, mainly because of the amazing barre-tenders. Seeing the happy faces of Kelsey, Maura, Mad Sauce, Caroline, Allison, and Rebecca got my ass off the couch and in front of that barre every single day. Barre > bar. Bless these strong, encouraging women. And it didn’t hurt that during week 3, they started playing songs from “A Star Is Born.” I’m far from the shallow now.
I Did It!
As I got closer to the end, I was enjoying my commitment to commitment. I’ve run many, many marathons (humblebrag), and I knew I could do it. I wanted to remind myself I can still do it. What is that cliché saying? Getting old is not for
those who die the faint of heart? DO IT! It didn’t hurt that after 30 days, my fanny looked amazing from the doing.
I found a place that had me humping the hardwood floors to Britney, gave me thighs for days, and served free margaritas on Friday. In 30 days, I found my people and got a reminder I could do anything I put my mind and body to. (Except going Free Solo on El Capitan. That guy is insane.)